Planet News

photo: Charles Brittin

“I have reached across the aisle. I have broken bread. I fully believe we all need healing in these moments, and that night, the symbolism was clear: a white person and a black person holding hands in the face of horrific racial violence, singing songs of freedom. What could be more comforting? But thanks to something I experienced the previous night in Charleston, I couldn’t shake a paralyzing feeling: When black people and white people clasped hands in the arena that night, the comfort wouldn’t be evenly distributed. The healing wouldn’t flow both ways.“
Dispatch From Charleston: The Cost Of White Comfort (via NPR)

“He had been reading Genet on this trip, and in thinking of Genet sauntering along La Rambla and into the Barrio Chino, Hauser felt less inauthentic and alone. Genet embroidered sacred joy over abject states of existence. To Genet the colors and roughness of prison clothing were reminiscent of the fuzzy petals of certain flowers. Genet wrote that theft was a hard, pure, luminous act, which only a diamond could symbolize. He said handcuffs shone like jewelry. Jewels and jewelry and flowers.”
Rachel Kushner’s short story, “The Sacred Family,” commissioned and read live at this year’s PEN World Voices Festival, is being featured as Electric Literature’s Recommended Reading this week! (via Pen America)

Please punctuate the following sentence:
According to The Huffington Post Ray Canterbury
a politician from West Virginia believes children
should work for their school lunch
(Your ability to punctuate this sentence will greatly
impact your eligibility for SSI/Food Stamps)

Amber Atiya’s incredible poem “NEW YORK STATE OFFICE OF TEMPORARY AND DISABILITY ASSISTANCE” (via LitHub)


Tin House: If you could spend the day with a character, who would it be and what would you do?

Stephen Sparks: I’m going to cheat by imagining a three-on-three pickup basketball game. On my side, Beckett’s Watt (“a red-nosed potbellied little old fellow of unknown origin and nature”) and Djuna Barnes’ transexual raconteur and questionable man of medicine, Dr. Matthew-Mighty-grain-of-salt-Dante-O’Connor.
On the other, Flann O’Brien’s philosopher De Selby, who argues that the world is sausage-shaped (I can’t imagine this theory helping his post-up game); Bellow’s Herzog (that guy needs to have some fun and, probably, exercise); and Dezső Kosztolányi’s Kornél Esti, an incorrigible doppleganger known for his destructive antics, narrow yellow ties, and atrocious puns. I’m not sure any of these characters would stick around on the court long enough for us to get a game in.
Stephen Sparks (of another beloved San Francisco bookstore institution, Green Apple Books), interviewed in Tin House!

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